Yonatan “Shafik” Richter, 48, from Ein Hod, was murdered by Hamas terrorists at the Supernova music festival on October 7.
Richter was attending the festival as a volunteer with the Elem-Youth in Distress organization, which sent a delegation there to provide counseling and emotional support to anyone undergoing a mental health crisis. The organization’s volunteers are known for attending such types of parties and gatherings in their recognizable blue shirts, which read “Good Guy,” to provide services to anyone experiencing distress, which can be common at raves where drug use is widespread.
There were nine Elem volunteers at the Supernova music festival near Re’im on the morning of October 7. Only six made it out alive.
Alongside, Richter, volunteers Lior Hadad Atias and Sigal Levi were also murdered.
Richter is survived by his partner, Doron Yehudai, his two daughters, and his mother, Elli. He was buried on October 15.
Known to his friends as “Shafik,” Richter was a devoted follower of the Indian mystic and yogi Sadhguru, and even translated his book, “Inner Engineering,” into Hebrew, with the translated edition published earlier this year.
His cousin, Ilan Richter, wrote on Facebook that he was grateful to have seen him just two weeks before he was killed.
“How lucky I am that we had a moment like that,” he wrote. “Two weeks ago. How much I loved that moment, to sit next to you, side by side, both of our children and all the family around, to talk.”
“How much that luck is missing, for all of us, since Saturday morning,” he added. “I love you Shafik. A lot. I will miss you, I will miss you so much.”
Moshe Elad, the director of Elem’s “Good Guy” project, told Ma’ariv that Richter had been with them for around two years.
“People always felt comfortable talking to him and opening up to him,” said Elad. “He came to our world from the trance scene. It’s very painful to lose friends who came to do good and to help.”
Anat Zayit wrote on Facebook that she knew Richter from their time together volunteering with Elem.
“May his memory and life’s work be a blessing,” she wrote. “My heart is broken into a million pieces. We lost one (of many) of the good guys. Rest in peace, dear Yonatan. You are in our hearts… at his funeral, I will wear my blue shirt in his honor.”
The Elem organization said that Richter was a good guy — “a good guy with a big heart and tremendous strengths, with a smile, a hug, authenticity and love for everyone. We don’t have enough words to describe this horrible pain.”
“I’m sorry to Yonatan, a good guy like you — sorry that you left us too early when you tried to be a safe anchor for partygoers. Rest in peace.”
Kobi Richter, his uncle, wrote on Facebook that he could not understand how the grass continued to grow, the flowers bloom, the sun set while the world was robbed of his nephew.
“How to explain to them that would cannot continue as if nothing has fallen, as if no man has fallen,” he wrote. “When a music festival turned into a slaughter festival with a concentration of evil, the harmony ceased, and so did you. The beach lilies turned into a funeral wreath.”